Vienna — The nuclear reactor that is believed to have supplied much of the plutonium for North Korea’s nuclear weapons appears to have been shut down for the past three months, the UN atomic watchdog said on Monday, without suggesting why. The 5MW reactor is part of North Korea’s Yongbyon nuclear complex, the possible dismantling of which was a central issue in talks between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Vietnam last week. The Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has not had access to North Korea since Pyongyang expelled its inspectors in 2009, and it now monitors the country’s nuclear activities mainly through satellite imagery. Some independent analysts, who are also using satellite imagery, believe the ageing reactor is having technical problems. “The agency has not observed any indications of the operation of the 5MW(e) reactor since early December 2018,” IAEA director-general Yukiya Amano said in a closed-door speech to his a...

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